Food Combining – What Do You Need To Know?

food combining

Eating healthy and maintaining a healthy diet is not just about those healthy foods you buy at markets, it is also about how you combine the food, how you prepare your meals, and how you eat it. Food combining is an aid that will help you change your eating habits.

The truth is that you can and should eat everything, but you need to follow some rules regarding the food you combine.


The most important rule in food combining is to avoid eating proteins and carbohydrates at the same time.

Salmon - food combining - avoid eating proteins and carbohydrates at the same time
Rules of food combining are derived from the biochemistry of our body, and our body tells us that carbohydrates are predigested with the help of alcalic saliva, while proteins are predigested with the help of acid gastric fluid in our stomach.

Before we start eating, our body will “choose” these two pre-digestion processes and prepare our body for both.


What happens with pre-digestion process of carbohydrates?

Fresh bread - food combining - pre-digestion process of carbohydrates
Our saliva forms an amylase, and it starts transforming carbohydrates into sugar, while our stomach in only a transit station. When we eat proteins, our saliva is made slimy and thinly, and the role of the saliva is to help the food slide down the stomach. The gastric acid acidifies the food pulp, collect the proteins, and forward them into the bowels.

Well-prepared food reaches the duodenum where it is made alcalic again, and then the needed enzymes in the small gut digest it. Through the bowel skins, all nutrients are introduced into the blood and the lymphatic circulation that distributes them into the whole body.


What happens when we combine our food in the wrong way?

Food combining - chocolate cake - What happens when we combine our food in the wrong way?
If you eat proteins and carbohydrates at the same time, the food is not digested completely; the process is longer and more complicated. In our mouth, the saliva has problems to penetrate the chewed food and it is likely that the pre-digestion of carbohydrates is not even activated.

In our stomach, we have similar problems – the enzymes are busy to find the proteins in the mixed pulp. The result is that the food lies in the stomach for hours, and you may experience heartburn. The carbohydrates have already begun with the fermentation. The gastric acid may also attack the mucous membrane of the stomach, and this may lead to stomach spasms as well as gastritis and stomach ulcers, in time.

The bad digestion will also result in the production of the toxins, which will get into the blood and lymphatic circulation and may cause serious illnesses.


So, why is food combining important?

Importance of Food Combining - chia seeds
If you combine your food in the correct way, your body will have the food for only one of the both natural processes of digestion. That way the food will be digested properly, the digestion process will take only two hours and it will be excreted daily. You will feel healthier, brisk, and you will have the overall feeling of easiness.

Let us see which food can we combine and which not.










CHEESE (less than 60% fat)


CHEESE (more than 60% fat)













As you can see, the category named NEUTRAL FOOD offers you some examples of the food that can be combined with both proteins and carbohydrates, on the other hand, these examples in the categories proteins and carbohydrates should not be combined.

Let us take milk, for instance. We usually eat milk and cereals, at least most of us do. Milk prevents the digestion of other foods introduced by milk, because it is not digested in the stomach, but in the duodenum. However, the use of acid fruits with milk does not cause any trouble.

The problem is also when we eat acid fruits with proteins. For instance, oranges, lemons or pineapples should not be eaten with meat and eggs (except with protein fats such as avocado, cheese, or nuts).

Acid fruits, due to the gastric juice, disable the protein digestion that results in putrefaction. Nuts and fresh cheese delay their digestion.

As for the jellies, jams, fruit butter, honey, syrups, when together with bread or cake, they produce fermentation. Syrup or honey with hot cakes is one of the worst food combinations. Sugar with starch means a sour stomach.

Eating two concentrated proteins at the same time is also a problem. For instance, nuts and meat, eggs and meat, cheese and nuts, or cheese and eggs, together in the same meal, they call for different types of digestion. One protein in a meal is a rule.

Watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew melon, pie melon, and other melons should ALWAYS be eaten alone, also. These foods decompose very quickly in the stomach and if eaten with other fruits they can cause trouble.

Another common mistake when combining food is eating fruits after meals. Fruits do not combine well with other foods. The simple sugar in fruit requires no digestion, and they do not stay long in the stomach. Food rich in proteins, fats and starch, stay in the stomach for a longer time, thus if you eat fruits after meal, the fruit sugar stays longer, or too long, in the stomach and ferment.

When talking about fruits, bananas and milk can cause serious problems and can even form the toxins. If you are a fan of banana smoothies, make sure that banana is very ripe.

Although the famous meal and favored by many, the combination of tomato and cheese pasta sauce is a problem. Tomatoes should not be mixed with starchy carbohydrates such as pasta because they are considered acidic. Your body will require a lot of energy to digest this meal.

As you can see, food combining is very important for our healthy diets and proper and healthy digestion.

Marsden, K. (2005).  The Complete Book of Food Combining: A New, Easy-to-Use Guide to the Most Successful Diet Ever. Piatkus Books.
Meyerowitz, R. and Meyerowitz, S. (2002). Food Combining & Digestion: 101 Ways to Improve Digestion. Sprout House.
Shelton, H.M. (2013). Food Combining Made Easy. Martino Fine Books.

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